6-8 weeks of age – First vaccination
10-12 weeks of age – Second vaccination
14-16 weeks of age – Third vaccination
9 months of age – Fourth vaccination (Rabies booster)
When a kitten or puppy is born it has no antibodies / immunity to diseases. The first milk, the colostrum has antibodies from the mother, maternal immunity. It is essential for the baby to suckle within the first 12 hours to get this benefit.These antibodies only last for +/- six weeks so need to be replaced by antibodies produced by vaccinations.
This is why we give the first puppy / kitten vaccination at 6 weeks of age. This first vaccination primes the body to recognise the vaccination as a pathogen and the body’s immune system then makes antibodies against the disease. It takes the body’s immune system about 3—4 weeks to make the antibodies. We would recommend that that a puppy or kitten is not re-homed until they are 8 weeks old, so the first vaccination is fully effective before they go out in to the big wide world!
Adult pets should get a Booster vaccination yearly. This booster vaccination is to refresh the body’s immune response to the disease. The annual booster vaccination for adult pets is essential not only to maintain maximum immunity but during the consultation the veterinarian can give your pet a thorough health check, answer any questions that you have, clip nails, express anal glands etc.